Taliban has been holding Atlanta man captive for over a year in Afghanistan

ATLANTA — The Taliban is holding an Atlanta man captive in Afghanistan.

There have been efforts to bring George Glezmann home, but a family representative says he hopes the White House ramps up its sense of urgency.

A family spokesperson told Channel 2′s Mark Winne that Glezmann used his travel privileges that went with being a Delta Air Lines mechanic often.

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He has been to many exotic locations.

But around the second day he was in Afghanistan for a visit, he was detained by the Taliban Intelligence Service and he’s been held most of the time since then in a basement in Kabul.

“Our mission is to secure George’s release from the Taliban,” the Glezmann family attorney, Dennis Fitzpatrick said.

Channel 2 Action News obtained a letter dated Oct. 10 from Ambassador Roger D. Carstens, Special Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs.

It says in part, “...the U.S. Department of State has determined that U.S. citizen George Glezmann has been wrongfully detained in Afghanistan. He was detained on December 5, 2022, and has been held in a detention facility in Kabul, Afghanistan since that time.”

“George was detained as he was essentially visiting Afghanistan for historical and tourism purposes,” Fitzpatrick said.

Fitzpatrick said he worked on a number of hostage cases when he was a federal prosecutor and signed on last week pro bono to help Glezmann’s family get him home.

A video on YouTube shows Glezmann exploring other cultures.

Late in life, he got an anthropology degree and he’s visited more than 100 countries.

“He was in Afghanistan lawfully. He came under unfortunate circumstances that have really gone on too long,” Fitzpatrick said.

A State Department spokesperson said, “The United States is concerned about the well-being of George Glezmann and other Americans wrongfully detained in Afghanistan and is actively working for their release. U.S. officials have continuously pressed, including in meetings with Taliban representatives, for the immediate and unconditional release of Americans wrongfully detained in Afghanistan, noting that these detentions are a significant obstacle to positive engagement.”

Fitzpatrick says he’s been told the Taliban recently allowed a physician to examine Glezmann and he has pressing medical issues, including a benign tumor affecting his vision and needs treatment.

Fitzpatrick says the Biden administration has been attentive to Glezmann’s plight, but it’s time to ramp it up.

“I think the White House needs to recognize that there’s a sense of urgency at this stage,” Fitzpatrick said.

Glezmann’s wife was provided a copy of a February letter to President Biden from Georgia Senators Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff.


It says, “We are thankful for your administration’s efforts on George’s behalf, and we urge you to sustain and redouble, with the utmost urgency, your efforts to secure his release.”

“The Taliban, they need to recognize that they have obligations if they’re going to be on the world stage,” Fitzpatrick said. “And those obligations are respect for the rule of law, respect for human rights, and respect for human dignity. And if they release George on humanitarian grounds, they’ll demonstrate that.”

A retired federal agent who has been working with the family to get Glezmann home says he hopes the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan hears that the family would appreciate forgiveness for any mistakes Glezmann made and requests he be released on humanitarian grounds for immediate medical treatment.

Glezmann was detained months after the U.S. military officially withdrew from Afghanistan.

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